Resolutions, Revisited: Part 1

(Okay, to be honest, I started this post more than a week ago, but I liked the beginning so I am not changing it.)

The end of 2016 is nearly here; 2017 is just around the corner, and this pedometer geek has forgone all the monthly reports on steps taken and books read. Despite the lack of monthly blogs, the resolutions have remained ongoing, and for the most part, there were an almost equal number of successes as failures (or should that be an equal number of failures as successes…in other words, is it more positive one way or the other?).

Having said that, regarding the first resolution of putting more steps on the pedometer, here is a roundup for the year. Except for the highlight of obtaining the goal of 10,000 steps every single day in March (finally the goal was reached), there have been several months in which this pedometer geek slacked off, particularly as the year neared its end. Aerobic steps leveled off, too. (Aerobic steps are those steps of at least ten continuous minutes of walking.) Again, the high was in March. Here are the totals for the year.

January: 248,245 steps/109,406 aerobic steps

February: 291,681 steps/159,579 aerobic steps

March: 329,663 steps/185,901 aerobic steps

April: 163,976 steps/39,344 aerobic steps

May: 200,469 steps/40,528 aerobic steps

June: 167,395 steps/9,577 aerobic steps

July: 199,157 steps/13,463 aerobic steps

August: 150,609 steps/5,936 aerobic steps

September: 130,338 steps/9,074 aerobic steps

October: 144,715 steps/7,109 aerobic steps

November: 113,547 steps/5,384 aerobic steps

December: 136,870 steps/13,326 aerobic steps

With the advent of 2017, new goals (resolutions) are being set. Of course, first and foremost, the goal remains to put 10K daily on the pedometer, but this pedometer geek has decided to track mileage as well. The goal is to log 1,000 miles this year. To do so will require about three miles a day, which equates to about 10,000 steps a day based on this pedometer geek’s stride length. In other words, it will take concerted, continual effort, not just one or two months. Will it be accomplished? Time will tell.

Next post: Reading resolution roundup

 

 

 

 

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SNC #Chasershots

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nbsmithblog...random digressions and musings

Normally this non-musical (I sing in the key of Off) pedometer geek reviews books because that’s what I know best, but not letting my lack of knowledge about music stop me, this is my lack-of-smart-phone #chasershots review of yesterday afternoon’s performance of Straight No Chaser’s 20th Anniversary show of I’ll Have Another World Tour in Cleveland, Ohio. To be honest, I don’t want a phone that is smarter than me, but I digress.

In a word, fantastic! From contemporary songs like Uptown Funk to smooth ballads to mash-up Christmas songs, they go Everywhere Man in their not-so-straight laced a capella renderings of songs. Face it, this ten-man group rocks the sold-out house every time, and this was no exception as they seemingly blended songs together. From tenors to baritones to the “percussionist” to the basses, each member’s vocal talents were on display and highlighted. Frankly since seeing them two…

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SNC #Chasershots

Normally this non-musical (I sing in the key of Off) pedometer geek reviews books because that’s what I know best, but not letting my lack of knowledge about music stop me, this is my lack-of-smart-phone #chasershots review of yesterday afternoon’s performance of Straight No Chaser’s 20th Anniversary show of I’ll Have Another World Tour in Cleveland, Ohio. To be honest, I don’t want a phone that is smarter than me, but I digress.

In a word, fantastic! From contemporary songs like Uptown Funk to smooth ballads to mash-up Christmas songs, they go Everywhere Man in their not-so-straight laced a capella renderings of songs. Face it, this ten-man group rocks the sold-out house every time, and this was no exception as they seemingly blended songs together. From tenors to baritones to the “percussionist” to the basses, each member’s vocal talents were on display and highlighted. Frankly since seeing them two years ago, I can’t ever hear Meghan Trainor’s All About the Bass without singing (No tenors) instead . Their music is just that infectious and memorable.

This is the third time good friends Jackie and Chuck, my husband, and I have been to see them, and I have yet to be disappointed. It would have been four times, but frankly they sold out last year’s tickets so fast that we were out of luck in our attempts to purchase them, but I digress once again. Cleveland always is fortunate to have two shows on their yearly tour, but any city is lucky to be booked on their tour, and now the group has even expanded their tour to Europe (and beyond?).

This Midwestern singing group began in 1996 at Indiana University, and became a  YouTube sensation with their own particular take on The Twelve Days of Christmas. (Google SNC or Straight No Chaser for this gem.) Then they were picked up by PBS to do a show, and the rest, they say, is history.

Their shows attract people from all walks of life, young and old alike, but mostly the young-at-heart.  If you get the chance, see them in person. It is well worth the money, but if not, they have CDs available (and what’s more, the members are more than willing to autograph them at their post-show event).

What more can I say? I loved the show (#awesome).

 

 

 

 

 

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Small stone: eggnog

Thick, creamy liquid

(the color of fresh-churned butter)

in crystal tumbler,

Rich with a touch of nutmeg (and auld lang syne).

 

-nancy brady,

(updated 2016)

Posted in blog, holidays, pedometer geek, poem, three breaths, Uncategorized, Writing | Tagged , , , | 4 Comments

Politics as usual?

The Presidential election is over; the results are in. While I am not necessarily thrilled with the results, I am going to give the man a chance. That’s what Americans do, or are supposed to do, with our ‘peaceful transfer of power’ (a quiet revolution if you will) that happens every four to eight years. And in four years, there may be another ‘peaceful overthrow’ of the government, or a choice to continue the revolution that was decided by the ballot box and Electoral College in 2016.

Why am I writing this piece? Because I have seen enough posts on Facebook in the past year or so that are so vile and hurt-filled by both sides of this election that I finally decided to weigh in, and today was no exception. In particular, a friend from childhood posted her thoughts about the post-election rhetoric (some almost as upsetting as those prior to the election) indicting that ‘enough is enough’ and ‘respect the decision of the voters’ and the reason she felt she had the right to express her opinion. She has the right to express her opinion for no other than reason than our First Amendment right to freedom of speech, but I digress.

While I don’t agree with everything she said, I will defend to the death her right to say them. In fact, that is part of the point of this post, and that there are things that I agree with, but there are a few things that she wrote that I can say I know to be untrue. She said, “I am fed up with the disrespect displayed by the American people. The people have spoken, they are tired of the policies of the Democratic party! Our government was set up to keep power in the hands of the people, not the government! Respect the voice of the voter as well as the process! Conservatives did not take to the streets when Obama was elected, either time! We accepted the way our government works, and waited for the opportunity to have our votes heard. One of the qualities that separates us apart from other governments is the peaceful transfer of power! Respect the decision of the voters and the process!”

For the most part, I agree with her. I, too, hate the disrespect displayed, but it’s on both sides of the political spectrum. There has been enough vilification of the other party and/or philosophical perspective of conservative/liberal (or even between individual candidates before the respective political parties selected their respective candidates) for more than a year. And I do respect the decision of the people’s votes even if I wished for different results.

I also respect the way our government works as set up by the founding fathers. Or, at least, how it is supposed to work. This I say because for the past four years, maybe more, there has been no real decisions made by the government, that is the legislative branch. There has only been gridlock by our elected officials in the Congress. Both the House of Representatives and the Senate have basically refused to do their jobs for the American people. They say they represent their constituents, but do they really? They say that they are doing what the people want, yet I can think of at least one issue in which the Senate failed to act upon in the past year. Obama, who was doing his job (part of the job of the executive branch), chose an outstanding candidate in Merrick Garland for the Supreme Court to replace Antonin Scalia after his death, but the party in charge of the Senate absolutely refused to bring him in and confirm or reject him because of the upcoming November election. This is one of the main function of the Senate members, (a part of the checks and balances of our government), but politics were more important than doing their job. (For those who say it was his last year in office, etc. it is not the first time a Supreme Court justice died in office in the last year of a President’s term and yet those Senate members ratified a new justice so this was just more proof of political machinations by the Senate leaders this time.)

Yet, despite this, many of those congressmen/women returned to their elected seats so obviously some voters like the status quo (despite those who talk of term limits, but that’s a subject for another post). So, will gridlock continue now that there is a new President? Or will every progressive law be overturned now that the President and the majority of the Congress are the same party?

Still, it was expressed that no one took to the streets over Obama’s election, and there I have to disagree. From almost the time Obama took office, there was a group of people who stood in front of our local post office with placards stating ‘Impeach Obama’ and other similar messages. I have to admit that I tried to avoid them because, as my younger sister always claimed, I liked to argue and, just for the sake of argument that I could take the opposite side of any issue, whatever the issue. In other words, I chose to avoid them because I didn’t want to get into any sort of political argument with them, but despite this, nearly four years later, these protesters caught me at a weak moment. When I walked over to the woman to answer her shouted question, she then bombarded me with all these reasons her organization believed Obama should be removed from office. After five minutes of this, I finally asked her a question. That question: “When did you first decide that he needed to be impeached?”

Her answer: “In March, 2009.” (Barely more than a month after he had taken office, and he hadn’t even begun working on his executive agenda including the Affordable Care Act).

My response then (and now): “That’s when you decided he was a bad President even before he took office? You didn’t even give him a chance; you decided in advance that he should be impeached.” At that, totally disgusted, I walked away, but I don’t ever recall seeing them there much after that. The reality is that Obama was elected by the people; that the majority voice through their votes was heard, and it is hardly an impeachable offense to take the oath of office. The same is true for Trump; he was elected. To repeat what I began with, I will give the man a chance if only because I don’t want to be like those who disgusted me by prejudging Obama. The people have chosen him to be our next President. That’s the way our democracy works.

 

 

 

 

 

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MMM Marathon in a Month

With two days left in October, this pedometer geek crossed the ultra-marathon finish line of fifty miles, breaking the tape yesterday. Today and tomorrow is just adding on the miles.

The ultra-ultra-marathon goal of a hundred miles is out of my reach, but it wasn’t for my fellow WordPress blogger and friend, Jules Paige. She exceeded the goal, and I am so proud of her and her accomplishment. Congratulations, JP! Well done.

 

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MMM Marathon in a Month-Halfway

As the fifteenth of October comes to a close, this pedometer geek has completed the marathon having logged at least 26.2 miles; however, the ultra-marathon of 50 miles was the goal I set for myself. So there is some work to do in the next sixteen days to reach the 50 mile mark; however, I think it is doable.

Would I love to stretch the limits and achieve the ultra-ultra-marathon goal of 100 miles? Absolutely. Will I? Realistically, no. That won’t stop me from trying, however, and maybe getting close.

What I am most excited about is that fellow poet, writer, WordPress blogger, and friend, Jules Paige, has joined this challenge, too. She challenged herself to complete the marathon, and she has. Having completed the 26.2 miles, she is now working toward completing the ultra-marathon, too. I have no doubts she’ll surpass it easily, but cheer her on in her quest regardless.

JP, keep up the awesomeness…see you at the finish line.

 

Posted in blog, Million Mile Month, MMM, pedometer geek, ultra-marathon, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , | 13 Comments